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April 5, 2013

Traveling With Pets? Be Sure To Pack These Items.

by AvenueWest Managed Corporate Housing

Pets are part of our families and American’s love our four-legged pals so much that last year, we spent $53.33 billion on pet related products according to the APPA (American Pet Products Association)! Many of us bring our pets along with us whenever we travel. Be sure to pack these 10 items whenever you bring your pets along:

  1. Be sure your pet's carrier is approved by the airline and will fasten securely for the duration of your travels.

    Be sure your pet’s carrier is approved by the airline and will fasten securely for the duration of your travels.

     Pet Carrier. Be sure your carrier is sturdy and that the door will stay shut for the duration of your trip. If you are planning on taking a plane, be sure to contact the airline your are flying with for specific pet carrier guidelines.

  2. Be sure all of your pets have a secure collar with ID tags with their name and your contact information.

    Be sure all of your pets have a secure collar with ID tags with their name and your contact information.

     ID Tags. Be sure your pet(s) have an identification tag on their collar with your pet’s name and your local contact information. You should also have a specific travel tag with your out-of-town contact information (if different). It is also wise to have your pet’s rabies tags on the collar as well. Make sure your pet’s collar is secure and will not fall off during your journey.

  3. Buckle your dog up whenever you are driving. There are different forms of seat-belt harnesses for all different sizes and mobility.

    Buckle your dog up whenever you are driving. There are different forms of seat-belt harnesses for all different sizes and mobility.

     Seat-Belt Harnesses. When traveling by car, you should always buckle up and your pets should be buckled too. There are specific seat-belt harnesses that are made for dogs so they can be strapped in while on the move in the car. If you are driving with your cat, be sure to have them in a carrying case and secure the case so that it is not moving around all over in the seat.

  4. Your pets need to stay hydrated while traveling. Portable water dispensers can be purchased to alleviate spills from happening and will keep your pets hydrated.

    Your pets need to stay hydrated while traveling. Portable water dispensers can be purchased to alleviate spills from happening and will keep your pets hydrated.

     Water/Food Holder. Travel water dispensers can be purchased which will control any spillage from occurring. Your pets need to stay hydrated just as much as you do so be sure to give them enough water – as much as you would when you are at home – during your trip. Fold-able travel bowls can be purchased and many can be used for both food and water, just be sure to read the label.

  5. You never know when an emergency might happen so be prepared with a first aid kit for your pets.

    You never know when an emergency might happen so be prepared with a first aid kit for your pets.

     First-Aid Kit. You can purchase pet first aid kits at any pet supply store or you can make your own. Be sure to include: gauze (both pads and rolls), cotton swabs, instant cold pack, roll of cloth, tweezers, thermometer, hydrogen peroxide, and antibiotic ointment. You can also include bottled water, plastic gloves, small scissors (if you are traveling by car or checking it in your bag), mild pet sedatives, and an eyedropper (for feeding). If your pet has suffered a serious injury or sickness, be sure to locate your nearest vet before administering care yourself.

  6. Be sure to bring along a familiar toy for your pet(s) to play with while traveling.

    Be sure to bring along a familiar toy for your pet(s) to play with while traveling.

     Toys. Be sure to bring along some item that will allow your pet to play while confined in a small space and will also smell familiar which will make them more comfortable.

  7. When traveling with your kitty, be sure to pack a portable litter box and get them acclimated to it before your trip.

    When traveling with your kitty, be sure to pack a portable litter box and get them acclimated to it before your trip.

     Portable Litter Box. When traveling with your feline friends, be sure to bring along a portable toilet for them to use. This method is safer than letting your kitty out of the car as they might run away. There are portable litter trays that fold up for easier storage and can be thrown away once your cat has finished. Be sure to get your cat accustomed to the new litter box a couple weeks before your trip so they can get used to the difference. Dogs can easily be put onto a leash and taken outside during a long car ride.

  8. To protect your car seats from hair and wear and tear, look into purchasing a removable seat cover.

    To protect your car seats from hair and wear and tear, look into purchasing a removable seat cover.

     Seat Covers. For long car rides you will want to invest in a seat cover that can easily be removed once your pet is out of the car to protect your car seats. These can be purchased in a variety of sizes, colors, textures, and prices.

  9. For long trips with your pets, consider getting them fitted with a microchip in case they get lost.

    For long trips with your pets, consider getting them fitted with a microchip in case they get lost.

     Microchips. It might be a good idea to get your pets fitted with tiny microchips that will track them in case they get lost. These can be done mostly by a small hypodermic needle into your pets and they usually cost less than $50.

  10. Traveling abroad may require you to have a pet passport. Check the US Embassy in the country you are traveling to for more information.

    Traveling abroad may require you to have a pet passport. Check the US Embassy in the country you are traveling to for more information.

     Pet Passport. A pet passport are documents from your vet that say your pet is healthy and that they are current on their shots. This might not be necessary if you are driving across the US but if you are traveling abroad, it might be. The European Union requires pet passports by law. Double check with the US Embassy of the country you are traveling too to find out what the pet import rules are before your trip.

Traveling with your pets can be a challenge at times but if you are prepared, it will make your vacation that much more memorable with your furry friends. For more information about all things pet, consult Animal Planet’s Pet Blog.

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